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. >> and the speaker tweeted, "how serious is the white house about avoiding the fiscal cliff?" reports suggest, in some cases, not so serious. and also, joanne, what is the strategy here, and is there a risk like looking like you're not really negotiating? >> well, you know, i think what's interesting is that there's the posture that everyone is taking in public, but then what you're hearing behind the scenes is that everyone's sort of understands what the contours of the deal are going to look like. and what i see is john boehner trying to sort of protect his caucus at this point because he probably understands that at the end of the day, that top rate is going to go up. and republicans are in a really awkward position because right now essentially they're just defending the tax cut for the top 2%. at the same time, the white house's public posture is to say well, no, we don't want to go over the fiscal cliff because you don't want to send that message to the markets. but then behind the scenes you sort of get the feeling they'd be willing to do it and they'd be okay at least temporarily havi
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